THE SUGARCUBES – “Deus” (brief review inspired by Prol)
“Deus” was the first Sugarcubes song I ever heard. It’s still my favourite: back then I could get off on the strangeness of it without realising that ‘strangeness’ was the group’s only point. That was true of a lot of 80s indie groups – they had a sound and worked it, and if you weren’t totally sold on the sound you might like one or two songs, and if you were your only option would be worship. I think that’s a reason the 80s feel so interesting but maybe really weren’t, because of all those groups – the Sugarcubes, the Cocteaus, and so on – ploughing their own very separate furrows. But they were furrows all the same, and another word for furrow is rut.

Anyway, the main reason I liked “Deus” wasn’t Bjork’s voice, which leapt about the track like a bug under a glass and even then kind of annoyed me: the reason was Einar Orn, whose smart, quizzical, thickly accented vocals drew me right into the track and kept me smiling. “He just had sideburns…and a quiff!” says the man, after meeting God. Bjork can have her millions and her Cannes prizes – she was always more chic, but Einar was always more cool. Which is important.